As police close in on Satlok Ashram of Rampal at Barwala to dig out its self-styled godman, his followers have suggested videoconferencing as a way to present him in the court, since that will avoid both confrontation and bloodshed.
With a 300-metre cordon on each side of the ashram, the police are ready to storm the fortified ashram anytime, since they have orders to produce Rampal in the Punjab and Haryana high court on Monday.
Ashram chief volunteer Purushottam Dass laid the videoconferencing formula before the media on Sunday, saying Rampal would appear in the court as soon as he was fit. Inspector general of police Anil Kumar Rao and superintendent of police Satendar Kumar Gupta said the court order to arrest Rampal would be carried out in all circumstances. They declined to reveal how.
Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Shamsher Kharkara on Sunday had a 30-minute meeting with ashram spokesman Raj Kapoor to break the deadlock. He is reported to have appealed to the ashram management to respect the high court order and ask Rampal to attend the hearing. The outcome of the meeting was not disclosed.
The police have cut the supply of water, electricity and food to the ashram. In the event of a showdown with the ashram volunteers, they have made all arrangements to move the injured to the Hisar Civil Hospital.